Pin It
rubbish_1
“Untitled (Print 18)” from Harley Weir and Wilson Oryema’s collaborative show 2018, rubbish_1Photography Harley Weir, courtesy of Soft Opening

Harley Weir and Wilson Oryema want to see your climate-crisis inspired art

The artists are among the judges of Art Partner’s new contest which invites creatives to artistically respond to the environmental crisis

It feels like the world is, finally, collectively rallying to combat the climate crisis: from Extinction Rebellion’s worldwide action to Greta Thunberg-led school strikes, governments are being forced to address our impending doom. With that comes the art world’s own response to climate emergency, the industry preparing an action of its own.

Ahead of the 25th edition of the annual UN climate change conference, management agency and production company Art Partner is launching a competition, inviting artists aged 18 to 30-years-old to creatively respond to the climate crisis. 

Selected by a jury of industry leaders, including Harley Weir and Wilson Oryema, the six most impactful entries will be widely shared during the conference, in an effort to call on governments to commit to zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The competition will ask young photographers, filmmakers, performance artists, musicians, and new media creatives to submit work, with the winner receiving $10,000 (£8,106) funding towards a future project responding to climate change, as well as the opportunity to collaborate on an editorial project with Art Partner. All five runners up will get $2,000 (£1,621) each to fund subsequent work, and ongoing Art Partner mentorship.

“We need a breath of fresh air; we need new ways to inspire positive, thoughtful action, and what better way than celebrating the work of the youth, who are leading the campaign on all fronts” – Wilson Oryema

“With the growing disregard and contention of so many long-held beliefs and practices about how we should take care of ourselves and the planet,” Oryema told Dazed, “many people have become apathetic to everything, whether that be the wellbeing of their neighbour, or the world, even in the face of imminent threats.”

The poet, artist, and model continued: “Image-making has been a key force in driving attention to environmental disaster around the globe. However, it feels as if we’re only now seeing the same images or compositions to tell that story, which isn’t enough. We need a breath of fresh air; we need new ways to inspire positive, thoughtful action, and what better way than celebrating the work of the youth, who are leading the campaign on all fronts.”

Also among the judges are designer Francisco Costa, Eco-Age founder Livia Firth, fashion designer Gabriela Hearst, agent Giovanni Testino, and Vogue Italia creative director Ferdinando Verderi. 

This year’s United Nations climate conference, known as COP25, will take place in Chile in December, and is critical in convincing developed countries to change their ways when it comes to climate change. Art Partner’s competition aims to raise the profile of the conference, as well as spotlight creative communities in their endeavour to encourage world leaders to act.

The deadline for submissions is November 1. See more details, and find out how to apply here.